The vision of a safe, convenient bikeway connecting the north of Brisbane to the CBD is getting so close to reality. But we’re still hoping for good news about the last crucial links.
Construction is well advanced on the North Brisbane Bikeway from Windsor to Wooloowin, which should be open early in the new year.
So the priority for 2020 is for the path to extend past Eagle Junction and on towards Nundah, Toombul and all the communities further north. This requires two levels of government to cooperate and deliver two crucial links:
The state government needs to move as fast as possible to deliver on its commitment to build ‘Stage 4’ of the North Brisbane Bikeway along Dickson Street to Price Street.
Brisbane City Council needs to sort out how it will continue the bikeway along Dickson Street to Junction Road, and on down Jackson Street to connect with the Kedron Brook Bikeway.
It’s clear that the community wants this to happen. Brisbane North Bicycle User Group’s ‘All the Way to EJ’ petition which closed in early December 2019, received more than 400 signatures — 320 online, and another 80-plus on paper.
A safe, separated bike path that runs the whole length of Dickson Street will save 2.6 kilometres for people cycling to the CBD from Toombul/Nundah and beyond. But as shown on our route maps, the local gains are even greater. The direct link will slash more than 4 kilometres from the trip to town for people starting their ride at Eagle Junction.
Direct, connected routes are one of the keys to getting people to switch to active transport. The Dickson Street link will provide a safe connection for people who live along the route to get to Eagle Junction for shopping, services and public transport. It will create better active transport access to Eagle Junction school, reducing the appalling traffic congestion that it suffers now.
These local benefits alone would justify completing the bikeway up Dickson Street and through to Jackson Street. The links for people further afield make the case even more compelling.
Even though the current on-road conditions on Dickson Street are dangerous, with cyclists stuck between parked cars and fast-moving motor vehicle traffic, they choose to ride that way because it is the direct, convenient connection to key destinations.
Connecting northern Brisbane
To the north, the missing links along Dickson Street and through Eagle Junction will connect with the Jim Soorley and Gateway bikeways, benefiting communities all the way from Nundah to Sandgate and beyond. This would represent the most direct north-south path as well, enabling people to reduce their commute time when travelling by bicycle.
To the south, the missing links connect with the high-quality North Brisbane Bikeway, bringing the CBD, Royal Brisbane Hospital, the fast-developing ‘Ekka’ precinct at Bowen Hills, and many other destinations within easy reach for people riding bicycles.
The sooner this is done, the more people will be able to choose active transport as a viable option, with all the associated benefits, including improved health and reduced traffic congestion.
So if you find yourself near a politician or decision-maker, explain to them how a complete, connected North Brisbane Bikeway will benefit you. Even if you won’t or can’t ride a bicycle that way, it will reduce congestion by giving more people an alternative to driving.